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Workshop Descriptions

Facilitating Species Conservation Planning Workshop
Sunday, April 14, 8:00 am - 5:00 pm
Additional $150 registration fee and application required

AZA SAFE is working with the IUCN Conservation Planning Specialist Group to provide a 6-week blended learning conservation planning and facilitation course for AZA members. The web-based portion of the course will run from February 18 - March 29 and culminate with a full day in-person workshop at the Mid-Year Meeting on April 14.

Please review an overview of the web-based coursework. While the core content will mirror the existing CPSG Conservation Planning and Facilitation course, elements of the course may be modified to include more details as they relate to conservation planning and facilitation for AZA SAFE programs and members. Course materials as well as time and homework requirements will remain the same.

This workshop required an application to attend. The deadline to apply was February 7 and we are no longer accepting applications. If you have questions about the workshop, please contact Kayla Ripple.

Becoming True Agents for Change: Mobilizing Our Audiences to Take Meaningful Action for Conservation
Sunday, April 14, 9:00 am - 5:30 pm
Additional $150 registration fee

Workshop Facilitator: Emily Routman, Emily Routman Associates

With annual visitation in the hundreds of millions and environmental problems reaching crisis levels, zoos and aquariums have come to recognize the importance of leveraging the connections we make between people and wildlife for real conservation impact. This workshop will prepare participants to integrate behavior change campaigns into their organization’s conservation strategy in a way that fits seamlessly into the recreational and educational nature of their relationship with their audiences. Participants will come away with an understanding of how to complement compelling animal experiences that awaken caring with community-based social marketing techniques that inspire and empower their audiences to take action.

Green Summit: Sustainability in Zoos and Aquaria - A Systems Approach
Sunday, April 14, 8:30 am - 4:30 pm
Monday, April 15, 8:30 am - 4:30 pm

The Green Summit will reinforce the direct connection between our operational output and its impact on the species and habitats we are actively working to conserve, while broadening our concept of sustainability beyond the baseline metrics of water, waste, and energy. Organizational sustainability uses systems thinking and the connections between economic stability, environmental integrity, and social equity to increase the bottom line, enhance brand, and mitigate risk. We use systems thinking to identify related system components and ensure successful outcomes for our field conservation work. Join us as we examine how to apply that practice to our institutions and industry.

Sustainability as a practice isn’t confined to a single department, therefore, sessions are designed to benefit cross-functional teams - from Guest Services, to Conservation, to Education, to Marketing, to Operations, to Living Collections.
Sunday, April 14 Monday, April 15
- Organizational Sustainability 101
- Networking Time
- Plastics Panel
- Climate Change Adaptation
- Behavior Change
- Storytelling for Impact
- Localism - How Local Purchasing Supports Sustainability Goals
- Small to Medium Organization and Sustainability Planning
- Networking Time
- Stakeholder Engagement and Sustainability Plan Workshop
Diversity Summit
Sunday, April 14, 9:00 am - 4:30 pm

AZA zoos and aquariums provide our communities with unique and valuable learning and recreation experiences not available anywhere else - it is essential that we are fully accessible to those communities. The Diversity Summit provides information and tools for understanding and advancing diversity and inclusion programs and practices to help ensure that our zoos and aquariums are representative of and accessible to the communities we serve. Who should attend? Zoo and aquarium leaders, HR directors, hiring managers, volunteer managers, and those interested in shaping the future of zoos and aquariums. It is highly recommended that two colleagues from the same institution attend together.

As a result of participating in the AZA Diversity Summit you will:
  • Learn how to talk more effectively about diversity and inclusion within your organization
  • Increase your knowledge of leading practices in diversity and inclusion
  • Determine next steps to advance diversity and inclusion efforts at your facility
  • Leave with tools to help you progress through next steps
The summit will include a keynote external speaker to discuss unconscious bias, privilege and best practices.  In addition, you will be able to hear from others from our field based, tailored to where your organization is at in your diversity journey during afternoon breakout sessions.
The Diversity Summit is included in your Mid-Year Meeting registration, but an RSVP is required.

Addressing the Human Dimensions of Conservation in AZA Conservation Programs Using Community Based Conservation Engagement
Wednesday, April 17, 9:30 pm - 6:00 pm
Additional $150 registration fee

Workshop Leaders: James Danoff-Burg, Director of Conservation, The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens, Terry O’Connor, Principal Consultant, Terry O’Connor Consulting LLC, Chris Schmitz, Director of Education, Utah’s Hogle Zoo

This day-long workshop is for staff who address the Human Dimensions of Conservation through AZA SAFE, SSP, TAG or other conservation programs. These dimensions include education, outreach, engagement, community analyses, sustainable use, and alternative livelihood – collectively addressed by the Community-Based Conservation Engagement (CBCE) Initiative of the CEC. We will help participants initiate and strengthen CBCE programs; explore collaboration opportunities; and encourage SAFE programs to involve CBCE in their programs. Small work groups and full-group discussion will enable participants to exchange ideas and experiences. At the end of the day, participants will have a draft CBCE strategic plan for their conservation project.

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